Home > Website archive > Public events > Events > 2012 > 03 > Latin America: Between social realism and magical realism

Latin America: Between social realism and magical realism

LSE Literary Festival event

Date: Saturday 3 March 2012 
Time: 7-8.30pm
Venue: Wolfson Theatre, New Academic Building
Speakers: Rolando Bompadre, Matías Néspolo  
Translator: Rosalind Harvey
Chair: Dr Francisco Panizza

As tense as a thriller, as vivid as an undercover documentary, Matías Néspolo’s first novel, Seven Ways to Kill a Cat, examines a place of crime and deprivation. Set in Buenos Aires at the time of Argentina’s financial crash, and seen through the eyes of twenty-year-old Gringo, it tells the story of two boys on the cusp of adulthood who have no choice but to join the gang warfare that rules their community. While its depiction of Buenos Aires rings true in every detail, the barrio could be any place of urban deprivation.

With fellow argentine author, Rolando Bompadre, he will discuss society and politics in Latin American literature.

Rolando Bompadre teaches Spanish and Italian at the University of Aberdeen, and is author of La víspera de los asesinatos, which was among the finalists of the 1st Premio Tusquets Editores de Novela.

Rosalind Harvey has lived in Lima and Norwich, where she fell in love with Spanish and translation, respectively. She now lives in London, where she translates Spanish and Latin American fiction. She has translated Hector Abad’s prize-winning memoir Oblivion and Enrique Vila-Matas’ latest novel Dublinesque with Anne McLean, and her translation of Juan Pablo Villalobos’ Down the Rabbit Hole has been shortlisted for the Guardian First Book Award. In autumn last year she was one of the first translators in residence at the Free Word Centre.

Born in Buenos Aires in 1975, Matías Néspolo studied literature, going on to write poems, short stories, journalism and then Seven Ways to Kill a Cat, his acclaimed first novel. He has been living in Barcelona since 2001 and, in 2010, was selected by Granta as one of their best young contemporary Spanish-language novelists.  Seven Ways to Kill a Cat is recommended by English Pen.

Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #lselitfest


A podcast of this event is available to download from Latin America: Between social realism and magical realism.

Podcasts and videos of many LSE events can be found at the LSE Public Lectures and Events: podcasts and videos channel.

Twitter and Facebook

You can get immediate notification on the availability of an event podcast by following LSE public lectures and events on Twitter, which will also inform you about the posting of transcripts and videos, the announcement of new events and other important event updates. Event updates and other information about what's happening at LSE can be found on the LSE's Facebook page.


This event has been certified for CPD purposes by the CPD Certification Service. Self-Assessment Record forms will be made available for delegates wishing to record further learning and knowledge enhancement for Continuing Personal and Professional Development (CPD) purposes. For delegates who wish to obtain a CPD Certificate of Attendance, it is the responsibility of delegates to register their details with a LSE steward at the end of the event and as of 1 September 2014 a certificate will be sent within 28 days of the date of the event attended by the CPD Certification Service.  If a delegate fails to register their details at the event, it will not prove possible to issue a certificate. (For queries relating to CPD Certificates of attendance after a request please phone 0208 840 4383 or email info@cpduk.co.uk).